Embarrassment is a very strong motivating force that I have experienced many times and probably will experience it more in my life. No one enjoys being embarrassed, and many people will do a lot to avoid it. Sometimes people will do stupid things to avoid being embarrassed, and I am one of those people. I admit that I will go pretty to avoid being embarrassed, and it has motivated me to do a stupid thing. One time I was at skate park very far away from my house. I was in 8th grade and with a couple of my friends at a skatepark. The skate park did not require us to wear a helmet or any protection. The skate park was very nice and we mostly skated this ten stair ledge. It was really smooth and easy to grind. The slope made it so easy that I did not even need to lean in to stop from falling. We all did easy trick on it because we were afraid from falling because the ledge was very big. The skatepark was very nice and all the ramps were wooden. The floor and ramps were so smooth to ride on you barely needed to push yourself. After skating a couple different spots in this giant warehouse we decided to go back to the ten stair ledge. We all kept skating it and we always hesitated when going for a bigger trick. After a while we were locking in the grind but we would jump off of out skateboards from hesitation. After a bunch more failed attempts we decided to sit down and cool off. Right as we sit down my cousin jumps up and says, “I got this now.” He rolled up to it and did the grind. There was a group of kids around him congratulating him. I remember feeling embarrassed because I started skating before my cousin and I considered myself better. The embarrassment got even worse when he said it was easy and that I should just go for it. All the kids were saying the same, to just go for it. During the time I remember thinking that I just have to go for it and commit. Out of fear of anymore embarrassment I got up and rolled up to it ready to commit. As I was rolling up to it I was trying as hard as I could not to think because I thought that thinking would just lead to me hesitating. I ollied up into the air thinking everything was going perfect. However as soon as my trucks locked in the board came to a halt, and I stuck and flew down. As I was falling I remember thinking “wow” and right as I finished that though I hit the ground. The good part was I cleared the ledge and just hit the concrete. The bad part was, when I hit the ground my torso hit the ground first then the side of my head slammed on the concrete. I remember my head hurt for a long time and there was pain shooting from one side of my head to the other side. After the first 20 minutes I my head started to feel better but I still felt dizzy and confused. I felt really stupid and regretted going for that trick. For the rest of the day I just sat out and lied down on a bench. That entire day I had a headache, and felt sort of dizzy. I do not really remember the first five minutes after hitting my head but my cousin said I just lied around. Now reflecting on that moment I realize that embarrassment is a very strong motivating force and I now know it from experience. Many people will do crazy things to avoid embarrassment, and I guess I am one of the people. I totally understand about how Tim O’Brien talks about embarrassment being a strong motivating force, and that is one thing I will always remember.
May 26, 2008